Thursday, May 25, 2017

*ARC* It Started With Goodbye - Review

It Started With Goodbye

By: Christina June 

Published: May 9, 2017 by Blink

272 pages

Source: ebook, Netgalley ARC from publisher 

(Goodreads / Amazon)

Summary:
Sixteen-year-old Tatum Elsea is bracing for the worst summer of her life. After being falsely accused of a crime, she’s stuck under stepmother-imposed house arrest and her BFF’s gone ghost. Tatum fills her newfound free time with community service by day and working at her covert graphic design business at night (which includes trading emails with a cute cello-playing client). When Tatum discovers she’s not the only one in the house keeping secrets, she finds she has the chance to make amends with her family and friends. Equipped with a new perspective, and assisted by her feisty step-abuela-slash-fairy-godmother, Tatum is ready to start fresh and maybe even get her happy ending along the way.

A modern play on the Cinderella story arc, Christina June’s IT STARTED WITH GOODBYE shows us that sometimes going after what you want means breaking the rules.
MY REVIEW:
My top two favorite Disney movies/stories are Beauty and the Beast and Cinderella. So yeah, I'm a sucker for any book that has these themes. It always sucks me in. I'm also a cover snob....but this cover didn't really intrigue me all that much.

I'm not so sure I would have described this as a "modern play on Cinderella". There are some similarities....a step mother that our MC, 16 year old Tatum, isn't close to. A grandmother (step) that happens to be extra kind towards Tatum and is made mention that she is "like a fairy godmother" and a stepsister that she isn't close to. But that's about where the similarities end. Dad goes away for the summer with his job and the mean stepmother is in charge of Tatum. Being about as grounded as you can get, she is only allowed to babysit and do her community service hours. She has started a graphic design business at the insistence of a friend, but she keeps this hidden from her stepmother. During one of her step-sister's ballet events at her prestigous private school, she uses the opportunity to leave business cards to try to get more clients. While there she meets a very charming, handsome guy, but never gets his name. In the course of time she starts getting emails from interested students from the school that she advertised her services at, and among them is a cello player whose emails to her verge on the flirtatious side.

I found the first 25% of the book to be rather slow. It really didn't get me interested until about 40% in. The reason is that I most definitely want a love story with my books. It felt like an introduction to a male prospect took longer than it should have in the beginning of the story...and that was an assumption that the first male introduced to our main character would be "the male". But I pushed on to see what more the story would bring. Even at 85% there is still no real romantic storyline. What does develop into one happens within the last 10% of the book.

Due to the amount of time Tatum is emailing, she spends a lenghty portion of brain power contemplating how to sign her emails, which valediction is best. This got annoying to me because it was mentioned EVERY time she sent an email.

The story has a theme more on the lines of what miscommunication and misunderstanding can bring about in relationships. I would recommend this book for middle school and high school age readers. The content and language are both very minor in nature.

Favorite Quotes:
"It's always better to do difficult tasks with friends."

"Do not underestimate the power fear has over our choices."

Yours in music and marshmallows, Seamus.

Language Rating: 1 (light)
Mature Content Rating: 1 (light)
Final Rating: 3 stars

2017 Series Enders Reading Challenge: May Wrap Up

Time for our fifth Monthly Wrap Up for the 2017 Series Enders Reading Challenge hosted by Sandy @ Somewhere Only We Know and Holly @ Words Fueled by Love!

Since the April Wrap Up, neither Holly nor Sandy have finished any series enders.

We have a couple of announcements/reminders that we'd like to mention this month.
  1. Please make sure we have a valid email address or other means of contacting you if you choose to participate. Linking up to Goodreads is perfectly fine, but we have found that Goodreads is not a reliable source for contacting someone should you be selected as one of the monthly giveaway winners. This could be due to your Goodreads notification settings or Goodreads themselves could be at fault. We're not sure which. And since we want to make sure that everyone who is eligible for one of the giveaways will receive their prize should they win one month or the grand prize at the end of the year, it is up to you to ensure that we can contact you and that you respond within a reasonable amount of time (usually stated in the email notifying you of your winning).
  2. While the challenge and giveaways are open internationally, please make sure that you can receive e-gift cards via Amazon.com or BarnesandNoble.com. Again, we want to make sure everyone has an equal opportunity to participate and to receive the prizes. Please remember that Holly and I are funding the giveaways out of our own pockets as something that we want to do, and we would like to continue to do so.
Which series enders did you finish? Link up below. Don't forget to include the title, your name, & your blog name (Ex: Requiem - Sandy @ Somewhere Only We Know) Also, the May giveaway runs from May 25th - June 25th. On June 25th we will use random.org and the linky entries to pull a winner.




Sunday, May 21, 2017

Sunday Post #114

Sunday Post is a weekly post hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer.
Each week bloggers participate to share any books received and news from their week.

Click on the book cover to be taken to its Goodreads page.

~PURCHASED~
Boys South of the Mason Dixon #1 by Abbi Glines
Preorder Buy Link: Amazon ($.99 deal)

~FOR REVIEW~
Cinderella.com by River Laurent
Buy Link: Amazon

Keeping Kyler (The Kennedy Boys #3) by Siobhan Davis
Preorder Buy Link: Amazon

RECAP OF WEEK:
SUNDAY:

THURSDAY:

We finally made it to summer! Well, nearly....as in two days of exams left for my kiddos. And then I have 4 days left with the little boy I've kept for nearly 5 years. That chapter is closing as he will start Kindergarten in the fall. Not sure what the next chapter will be but I look forward to it.

And just like that I have a 10th grader and an 8th grader! Time really does go by so fast, so my philosophy has always been to enjoy the age they were at, to enjoy every moment so that I wouldn't look back and regret. As they are now both teenagers that means being at every volleyball game, every basketball game, every football game to watch my son march in the drumline, every band competition and chorus performances. I'm just soaking up every opportunity I have to watch them both do what they love and be their biggest fans along the way!  

2017 SERIES ENDERS READING CHALLENGE SIGN UP:
You can now join us for our 4th annual Series Enders Reading Challenge for 2017! Join anytime until December 15, 2017. We give away a gift card EVERY month to one lucky participant and we award a GRAND PRIZE at the end of the year. The more series enders book reviews you link up - the more entries you have to win. Come join us!



Enjoy your week!
Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

*ARC* When It's Real - Review

When It's Real

By: Erin Watt

Published: May 30, 2017

416 pages

Source: ebook, Netgalley ARC from publisher 

(Goodreads / Amazon)

Summary:
Wealth, fame and a real-life romance she never expected—seventeen-year-old Vaughn Bennett lands it all when she agrees to become a pop star's fake girlfriend in this smart, utterly addictive novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author duo Erin Watt  
Under ordinary circumstances, Oakley Ford and Vaughn Bennett would never even cross paths. 
There's nothing ordinary about Oakley. This bad-boy pop star's got Grammy Awards, millions of fangirls and a reputation as a restless, too-charming troublemaker. But with his home life disintegrating, his music well suddenly running dry and the tabloids having a field day over his outrageous exploits, Oakley needs to show the world he's settling down—and who better to help him than Vaughn, a part-time waitress trying to help her family get by? The very definition of ordinary
Posing as his girlfriend, Vaughn will overhaul Oakley's image from troublemaker to serious artist. In return for enough money to put her brothers through college, she can endure outlandish Hollywood parties and carefully orchestrated Twitter exchanges. She'll fool the paparazzi and the groupies. She might even start fooling herself a little. 
Because when ordinary rules no longer apply, there's no telling what your heart will do…
MY REVIEW:
After loving their debut series The Royals, I knew I had to be on any other ARC lists that came out by them. I was stoked to be approved to receive an ARC and it did not disappoint! Fun, charming, sexy and not overkill in the graphic scene department.

What you need to know....this is a story of a 19 year old pop star whose image is trashed due to partying too much, too many women and not producing any new music in two years. Oakley Ford. His publicist and manager cook up this idea to clean up his image by hiring a "normal" girl to pretend to be in a relationship with him for a year. $20,000 a month for 12 months.Vaughn Bennett is that girl. After her parents died two years ago, she and her older sister have been working to support themselves and their 12 year old twin brothers. Vaughn has put off college for a year so she can work full time to help pay bills. She's not following her dreams or her passions....if she even knew what those were. She's barely getting by. Her one anchor is her boyfriend who stood by her and helped her grieve the loss of her parents. So when her sister, who works for the agency that Ford is signed to, tells her they saw a picture of her and want to meet her and everything this "job" entails, she agrees to go. She wants more for her brothers than they can currently give them. This world of his though, is made up of money, too many people, no privacy, and lots of media publisicing every single detail of what he does and who he does it with. What Vaughn didn't expect along the way is that maybe the image Oakley shows everyone else really isn't who he is at all. One can be rich and famous but also be completely loney and gaurded. Getting past his arrogant and conceited exterior proves to be a challenge.


It was a fast enjoyable story! My only complaint, if you want to call it that, is that it seemed to end too soon. I would've enjoyed more for the ending. But then again, maybe it's just that 416 pages flew by.

Favorite Quotes:
"You'd be good doing anything." As he ambles down the hall, he says over his shoulder, "But you should do something you love."

Every day I'm with you is brighter and more exciting than the last.

"And no matter how broken your heart is, you got something valuable out of it." ... "You got to see what it looks like when someone's pursuing something they love."

But isn't anything worth having worth an effort? Oakley is worth the effort. He's worth everything and he doesn't always know it.

Language Rating: 2 (medium)
Mature Content Rating: 2 (medium)
Final Rating: 4 stars

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Sunday Post #113

Sunday Post is a weekly post hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer.
Each week bloggers participate to share any books received and news from their week.

Click on the book cover to be taken to its Goodreads page.

~FOR REVIEW~
The Butterfly Project by Emma Scott
Preorder Buy Link: Amazon

RECAP OF WEEK:
SUNDAY:

This week was mostly the same as with our normal routines and such. My husband and I had planned a date night for Friday night. He has been pretty sick but we went anyway. We went to eat and to see King Arthur, and of all things to Home Depot. UGH! Home Depot wasn't for fun home projects but just for items needed for maintenance. I told my husband that we are gonna have to come up with things to do that are more exciting. So tell me. If you are married with kids and have those oh, so rare date nights, what do you do?

Saturday I took my Mom and Dad out for a late lunch at a Japanese Steakhouse and for dessert afterwards. We had a great time! For all you Mom's out there, Happy Mother's Day!! 

2017 SERIES ENDERS READING CHALLENGE SIGN UP:
You can now join us for our 4th annual Series Enders Reading Challenge for 2017! Join anytime until December 15, 2017. We give away a gift card EVERY month to one lucky participant and we award a GRAND PRIZE at the end of the year. The more series enders book reviews you link up - the more entries you have to win. Come join us!



Enjoy your week!
Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Sunday Post #112

Sunday Post is a weekly post hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer.
Each week bloggers participate to share any books received and news from their week.

Click on the book cover to be taken to its Goodreads page.

~FOR REVIEW~
Dividing Eden #1 by Joelle Charbonneau
Preorder Buy Link: Amazon

RECAP OF WEEK:
No Posts

This past week was good. We are in the home stretch for my kids school year. 13 school days left. I've gotten out of my reading slump, though I'm not blasting through books either. In other news, my husband and I have been consistently working out for 38 days now. That may not seem like much to some, but for those who battle being consistent with exercise will understand my excitement over this. Oh and lastly I finally started listening to the Podcast Up and Vanished (after a cousin continually posted on social media that it was as good or better than Serial). Friday and Saturday I pretty much binge listened to it. If you like true crime and unsolved crimes then yes, yes, yes!

2017 SERIES ENDERS READING CHALLENGE SIGN UP:
You can now join us for our 4th annual Series Enders Reading Challenge for 2017! Join anytime until December 15, 2017. We give away a gift card EVERY month to one lucky participant and we award a GRAND PRIZE at the end of the year. The more series enders book reviews you link up - the more entries you have to win. Come join us!



Enjoy your week!
Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

2017 Series Enders Reading Challenge: April Wrap Up

Time for our fourth Monthly Wrap Up for the 2017 Series Enders Reading Challenge hosted by Sandy @ Somewhere Only We Know and Holly @ Words Fueled by Love!

Since the March Wrap Up, Holly hasn't finished any series enders. Sandy finished one: All In (Full Tilt, # 2) by Emma Scott.

Which series enders did you finish? Link up below. Don't forget to include the title, your name, & your blog name (Ex: Requiem - Sandy @ Somewhere Only We Know) Also, the April giveaway runs from April 25th - May 25th. On May 25th we will use random.org and the linky entries to pull a winner.




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